Champions League - Galatasaray beat Braga to reach last 16

Champions League, Group H - Braga 1 (Mossoro 32) Galatasaray 2 (Burak 58, Aydin 78)

Champions League - Galatasaray beat Braga to reach last 16

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Braga's Leandro Salino (L) fights for the ball with Galatasaray's Burak Yilmaz during their Champions League Group H match

Galatasaray beat Braga 2-1 in the final game of Group H to go through to the knockout stages of the Champions League as runners-up behind Manchester United.

The Turks were a goal down at the break through Mossoro’s 32nd minute goal, but an inspired substitution by Galatasaray manager Fatih Terim at half-time changed the game.

The 59-year-old brought on Nordin Amrabat and Aydin Yilmaz in place of Hamit Altintop and Johan Elmander, and the pair proved the catalyst for the comeback.

Amrabat supplied the cross for Burak Yilmaz’s 58th minute leveller, then Aydin poked home the winner 20 minutes later.

Galatasaray started the game as if they were playing for a draw and relying on Manchester United to beat Cluj at Old Trafford. The Turks knew they would automatically qualify if they matched Cluj's result at Manchester United. Braga's European campaign was already over and they finished in last place with just three points won.

The Portuguese side should have taken the lead in the 15th minute, after Mossoro stole the ball off Dany Nounkeu on the edge of the area and put in Eder, but Felipe Melo recovered well to make a great block.

The home side eventually broke the deadlock in the 32nd minute, and again it was down to poor Galatasaray defending.

Leandro Salino ghosted down the left after an Elmander mistake, and following a Melo mis-kick in the box Mossoro was able to stroke the ball past goalkeeper Fernando Muslera from the edge of the area for his second goal of the season.

Galatasaray seemed impotent up front, with Elmander particularly anonymous.

Their only shot of note came just before half-time, when Selcuk Inan forced Braga goalkeeper Quim to tip a free-kick over the bar.

Terim made his crucial changes at the break, and the away side levelled 13 minutes into the second half.

Amrabat did well to cut inside Salino on the left and cross, and Burak Yilmaz got in front of Paulo Vinicius to head home past Quim for his sixth Champions League goal of the campaign.

They almost scored a second just four minutes later, when Melo found Emmanuel Eboue down the right with a magnificent reverse pass, but the Ivorian fell over as he shaped to shoot in the area.

Aware that Cluj were winning at Old Trafford, Galatasaray upped their efforts, and hit the winner with 12 minutes to go.

Quim saved Melo's shot across goal, but deflected the ball straight into the path of Aydin to tap home.

The visitors could have hit a third in injury-time when Burak turned Ruben Amorim in the area but Quim managed to get a finger on the shot and deflect the ball onto the crossbar.


Semih Kaya - Galatasaray: The defender kept his side in the game in the first half, negating the threat of Eder with great positional play and some robust tackles, then providing the base for the visitors' second-half comeback.


BRAGA: Quim 6, Coelho 6, Elderson 6, Ismaely 7, Vinicius 6, Amorim 6, Mossoro 7, Salino 6, Custodio 6, Alan 7, Eder 6. Subs: Viana 6, Carlao 6.

GALATASARAY: Muslera 6, Eboue 7, Semih 8, Nounkeu 7, Riera 5, Altıntop 5, Selcuk 7, Melo 7, Emre 6, Elmander 5, Burak 7. Subs: Aydın 8, Amrabat 8, Umut 7.


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